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Old 04-05-2017, 11:03 AM
 
3,672 posts, read 6,057,911 times
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My fiancé and I are 29 and we own a home that is about 30 minutes away from both of our parents' houses. No kids yet. Both sets of parents expect us to visit them for every family members birthday (four adult siblings, us, all four of them, anyone else who is local) and every holiday. For example Easter weekend happens to be the same weekend as my fiancées birthday and he and I had planned on going out of town all weekend alone to celebrate his birthday. We have recently been informed that this is not acceptable - both my parents and his parents expect to see us for Easter AND my fiancées birthday, yes at least 3-4 separate events in one weekend. I may be able to negotiate it down to two events but the guilt trips are flying in hot. I am not religious, I don't care about Easter at all (nor does my fiancé). It doesn't seem to matter to anyone that my fiancé has no desire to spend his birthday with family either, although it is kinda hard to say that flat out. We are not 8!!!

I am getting fed up with all of these family events. Once a month is fine but it seems like it's every weekend. Does anyone have any advice? I don't want to move far away but I fear I might have to.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:16 AM
 
Location: State of Transition
78,526 posts, read 70,430,585 times
Reputation: 76489
Once a month is fine? That seems like a lot.

Don't negotiate, OP. Just go out of town, and enjoy yourselves. You and your fiancé need to have your own life. Your families can adjust. Are they going to continue these demands when you're newlyweds? Their expectations (demands) are unreasonable. You two need to be having alone time, and bonding time. Overbearing relatives like this can crush a relationship, eventually.

You're adults. You don't need anyone's permission to spend holidays and birthdays as you wish. If they say skipping the family Easter gatherings isn't acceptable, just tell them not to plan on your attendance, and leave it at that. Ignore the guilt trips, or give them some guilt trips of your own. You could push back, and accuse them of interfering with your relationship, and trying to undermine it. Both sides can play the guilt trip game, though I wouldn't recommend that, except as a last resort.

You may, indeed, have to move far away. It seems odd, btw, that both families are making similar demands, both families celebrate Easter, etc.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:19 AM
 
Location: Finally the house is done and we are in Port St. Lucie!
3,488 posts, read 2,069,356 times
Reputation: 9735
Just say no.

You already have plans and you aren't going to change them.

They are like little kids right now, seeing what they can get away with/how far they can push you into doing what they require.

Time to set those boundaries and stick to them. It gets easier the more you don't bend to their will. If you don't get this in check now, your life WILL be hell if/when kids are in the picture.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:23 AM
Status: "could've~would've~should've used 'have', not 'of'" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
10,451 posts, read 14,299,056 times
Reputation: 23172
Well, the holidays are usually more about being able to get the entire family together in one place at one time, not so much about religion.
And birthdays, yes parents are always going to hope to see their kids to celebrate even if it's not on the actual day. I guess it's nice to try to get the whole family together for birthdays but I can see that it might get old if it seems to happen a lot.
One solution is for you to host the get togethers, announce to your family that you're serving the holiday meal and everyone is invited, and btw we're also having birthday cake for desert!
Another possible solution is to tell your family your sorry you can't make the planned celebration but on your way to (or from) your out of town trip you'll be happy to stop by for a slice of cake and a drink.
I don't think you can get out of this altogether but you should be able to make it more manageable. It gets worse once you have kids, if that's in your future.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,877 posts, read 25,302,878 times
Reputation: 26334
If you don't learn to say no right now, you will be caught in this trap forever!!!! And if you have kids it will be exponentially worse.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:40 AM
 
1,950 posts, read 954,857 times
Reputation: 5221
Quote:
Originally Posted by brocco View Post
My fiancé and I are 29 and we own a home that is about 30 minutes away from both of our parents' houses. No kids yet. Both sets of parents expect us to visit them for every family members birthday (four adult siblings, us, all four of them, anyone else who is local) and every holiday. For example Easter weekend happens to be the same weekend as my fiancées birthday and he and I had planned on going out of town all weekend alone to celebrate his birthday. We have recently been informed that this is not acceptable - both my parents and his parents expect to see us for Easter AND my fiancées birthday, yes at least 3-4 separate events in one weekend. I may be able to negotiate it down to two events but the guilt trips are flying in hot. I am not religious, I don't care about Easter at all (nor does my fiancé). It doesn't seem to matter to anyone that my fiancé has no desire to spend his birthday with family either, although it is kinda hard to say that flat out. We are not 8!!!

I am getting fed up with all of these family events. Once a month is fine but it seems like it's every weekend. Does anyone have any advice? I don't want to move far away but I fear I might have to.
LOL, it never ceases to amaze me, the rules and regulations people allow others to impose on them.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
1,653 posts, read 1,230,192 times
Reputation: 6066
You are both adults and shouldn't be pressured into something you don't want to do. I can't imagine negotiating these things with family. It sounds like you either need to put your foot down or move further away. That kind of smothering would drive me nuts.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
5,102 posts, read 5,385,884 times
Reputation: 12612
You need to set your boundaries now before the kids come.

"I'm sorry, we have plans for that weekend. Let's celebrate Jared's birthday on the following weekend." No negotiating, no arguing, no, no, no.

Do you guys ever have a weekend without being required to attend a family event?
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:47 AM
 
35,109 posts, read 40,193,301 times
Reputation: 62049
Quote:
Originally Posted by brocco View Post
My fiancé and I are 29 and we own a home that is about 30 minutes away from both of our parents' houses. No kids yet. Both sets of parents expect us to visit them for every family members birthday (four adult siblings, us, all four of them, anyone else who is local) and every holiday. For example Easter weekend happens to be the same weekend as my fiancées birthday and he and I had planned on going out of town all weekend alone to celebrate his birthday. We have recently been informed that this is not acceptable - both my parents and his parents expect to see us for Easter AND my fiancées birthday, yes at least 3-4 separate events in one weekend. I may be able to negotiate it down to two events but the guilt trips are flying in hot. I am not religious, I don't care about Easter at all (nor does my fiancé). It doesn't seem to matter to anyone that my fiancé has no desire to spend his birthday with family either, although it is kinda hard to say that flat out. We are not 8!!!

I am getting fed up with all of these family events. Once a month is fine but it seems like it's every weekend. Does anyone have any advice? I don't want to move far away but I fear I might have to.
Be an adult and quit allowing anyone to guilt you into anything and control your emotions.
Tell them you already have plans to be gone the entire weekend.
They will accept and adapt or not, their choice.
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Old 04-05-2017, 12:03 PM
 
Location: Middle of the Pacific Ocean
11,659 posts, read 6,266,537 times
Reputation: 11475
Quote:
Originally Posted by BobCaldwell View Post
LOL, it never ceases to amaze me, the rules and regulations people allow others to impose on them.
I think its less so people have rules and regulations imposed on them and more so people wanting to accommodate others in the name of preserving preexisting relationships/ties. That said, if the OP's family and the OP's fiance family are the type that would shun them for skipping a few meetings, then there is a bigger issue and I'm not sure those are the type of folks I'd want to be spending more time with to begin with.
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